Sunday, 28 August 2011

At For-ty, I'm Beginning to Understand...

One of the things I'm beginning to understand is that I am only beginning to understand certain things.  There is still much ground to cover.  (I remember the saying: "God put me on this earth to accomplish a number of things.  I'm so far behind, I'll never die!" LOL!) Very few are the things that I fully understand - given hindsight and frame of reference and perspective and experience and what not.

I had a bout of illness the other day.  Apparently, when you're not in the best of health, that's one of the first and primary avenues to putting things into perspective.  All of a sudden, the bright light does appear.  It shines on everything around you, allowing you to assert and focus, with unparalleled clarity, on what really matters; what is important.  As it happened, this slump - yes, let's call it that.  Or, we could also call it this slipping under the radar, happened at For-ty.  Ah!  In time to help me shape my understanding of the necessity of being healthy, even as I began to understand a heck of a lot more things.

At For-ty (and, as I'd said just after celebrating my birthday earlier this year, writing it with the hyphen just makes it sound pre-tty), I'm beginning to understand that no matter how grown up I am, my mother will always be Mother.  We have the same age difference between us.  She loves me just as much as she did when she gave birth to me. She still has that maternal instinct.  Even when we disagree, I can count on her still liking me and loving me.  She is always looking out for my best interest, and, if I choose not to speak to her on certain matters, she finds other matters, until we get back to the matter at hand.  I'm beginning to understand that as long as she is alive, she will continue to pray for me and her support will be reliable.

I'm beginning to understand that my dad is prouder of me than he'd say to my face. (He does say it to others.) I'm beginning to understand that he prays for me and has high hopes for me and supports me more than I think, well, used to think.  Though, honestly, it's not something to which I gave a lot of thought.  That he is happy that I am a good role model for my sisters and that I help them when I can.

I'm beginning to understand that sisters sisters are a mix of sisters and friends and mean more to me than my closest friends.  I'm beginning to understand that my closest friends are like my sisters. 

I'm beginning to understand the value of having a brother-in-law with whom "the family" gets along; who is liked.  Seeing myself through the eyes of someone coming from "outside",  I've accepted that sometimes I could do things better; be nicer - it helps me strive to be a better person.  Thankfully, there are more times when I am appreciated and admired.  And, at all times, respected.

I'm beginning to understand that having a niece that I can "borrow" for my "kid-fix" is priceless!  Especially so when that niece is, for like, 90% of the time, an absolute pleasure to be around.  The conversations we have are uncomplicated...simple and creative.  I'm beginning to understand that the world as seen through the eyes of a 2 and 1/2 year old is, shall we say, a different place.  Her view of the world seems to be borne out of her being one word: Fearless!  She grabs it, dives into it, leaps off it, sometimes makes it up as she goes along; jumps onto it - whatever it is - with what we hope is the appropriate amount of protection.  In other words, I'm beginning to understand that caution is oftentimes taught and learnt - sometimes too well.  And that it may lead to fear, and limiting oneself and...and a type of (or many types of) paralysis.

I'm beginning to understand that many people who have children love them.  And want the best for them.  And that, having a child adds inexpressible meaning to one's life that simply cannot be realized through any other...experience.  I am beginning to understand that most parents think their children are special and are really princes and princesses - even if the rest of the world, shoot, even if the neighbour, mightn't think so.  I am beginning to understand that parenting really does not come with a manual - no matter how much "they" try to prepare you for it - and that new parents just try their hardest to get used to, and make the best of, the new addition(s).  I'm beginning to understand that some fail miserably at this and some manage quite well - and many fall in-between.

I'm beginning to understand that I have never lost in loving. And, my choice of "loving thickly" has always been the right one.  Hmmm.  More anon in the Pt. II of this :-)

I'm beginning to understand that my health ought not to be taken for granted.  And, even if I never used to take it for granted, (which I never did), it is possible for my body to do things that are neither pleasing, nor pleasant.  I recently increased my understanding of what it means to be in pain - all over! Enduring what felt like daggers clawing through certain parts of the body more than others; high temps; muscles on fire while being physically alone.  My understanding that "health is first and everything else follows" as expressed by my Bodysculpt instructor, Maha, increased significantly!  In those moments when I had nothing but a prayer and Jesus (ok, and some painkillers, and my family via phone), I began to ask the "What ifs?"  Admittedly, I didn't - couldn't - dwell on them for long.  I found more strength in being hopeful in Christ that He could - and would - make me well.  After all, I was beginning to understand the whole "His body was broken for me" thing.  Out of that came something else I quickly acknowledged as well.  Negative sentiments such as one uttered by an acquaintance; stteo: "And it's just getting worse, eh?" grated every nerve and sinew!  My quick response was, "No.  It's not.  This is just something different I have to deal with."  Upon a brief reflection, I realized that I do surround myself with people who have faith; who are positive.  Clearly, I had to declutter - and fast!

And, since then, each day gets better!  (Oh, so many uses for that John Legend song.)

I have promised to catch up with the 3rd entry for this month, by the end of the month.  I imagine that, life spared, it'll be the Part II to this heading.

Btw, today marks the 3rd Anniversary of this Blog.  As I'd long mentioned, I was inspired by Usain Bolt's performance at the Olympics in Beijing.  Sometimes, you just need a good start.  For me, it was a matter of becoming fearless and writing for public consumption (and criticism).  But, mostly, a matter of writing.  Just writing.

It's write or suffocate, remember?


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